"...IF YOU FOLLOW YOUR BLISS, DOORS WILL OPEN FOR YOU THAT WOULDN'T HAVE OPENED FOR ANYONE ELSE." - Joseph Campbell

"SOMETIMES ON THE WAY TO YOUR DREAM, YOU GET LOST AND FIND A BETTER ONE." - Lisa Hammond

"IT IS POSSIBLE AT ANY AGE TO DISCOVER A LIFELONG DESIRE YOU NEVER KNEW YOU HAD." - Robert Brault


"IT'S NEVER TOO LATE TO BE WHO YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN." - George Eliot

"WE DID NOT CHANGE AS WE GREW OLDER. WE JUST BECAME MORE CLEARLY OURSELVES." - Lynn Hall

"GO CONFIDENTLY IN THE DIRECTION OF YOUR DREAMS! LIVE THE LIFE YOU HAVE IMAGED." - Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, October 29, 2009

** IT'S "RAINING" LEAVES **

When I came downstairs to make coffee this morning, it was actually slightly sunny outside. The wind was blowing just perfectly to make the golden leaves fall and sway from my back-yard neighbor's trees, until they eventually landed in others' yards, including mine! But, did that bother me one bit? Of course not! I just stood at the patio door in awe and wonder.

It is now dark and gray and gloomy...again....and we are in for more rain. This month has set a record (already) for the amount of rain we've had in October, since records were kept, I think in the late 1890's.

If it hadn't been for the glorious fall foliage, I think I would be seriously depressed by now.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

** CALLING ALL ST. CHARLES & ST. LOUIS PUBLISHED WRITERS **

The St. Charles County Library District is having a Holiday Open House that will feature local, published authors from the St. Charles/ St. Louis area. (They want writers who have been published in BOOKS, not magazines, newspapers, online, etc. This event is being held to meet our wonderful published writers, and provide a venue for them to sell their books. This is for writers of published books, but also includes writers whose work is featured in anthologies.)

The Holiday Open House will be at the Middendorf-Kredell Branch Library, 2750 Highway K, O'Fallon, from 4:30 to 8 p.m. on November 19, 2009.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

** Ponderings On A Sunday Morning **



I woke up around 5:00 am today and knew immediately I was wide awake and wouldn't be going back to sleep....at least anytime soon. This happens fairly often and since I'm a morning person anyway, I've gotten quite a few things accomplished already. One problem may be that I'll be ready for lunch at 9:00 am, dinner around 2:00 pm and then a good nap! (Naps are pretty much a requirement in my life. Fortunately, my husband understands my need for rest, so there wasn't any need to add that to our marriage vows.)

I bought fresh apples yesterday and hope to get an apple pie made today. Yum........I think it'll be baked, and cooling on a wire rack, way before football begins at noon on TV.

This past week was quite eventful, and all in good ways. In chronological order:
My son, Mark, and his girl friend came over for dinner.
Finding out about a publication in 2010.
Mark's birthday.
Calling "T" & "K" about the upcoming publication.
Working on various projects and completing some.
Meeting some parents of Mark's college friends & going out for an evening of food and fun.

Time to end my ponderings for now. I need to get out my apple peeler/corer/slicer thingy and get going on making that pie......mmm...can't you just smell the aroma??

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

** Joy & Happiness Come From Many Places **

First of all.....Happy Birthday to my youngest son, Mark!!! I can't believe you are 22 years old!! You have brought an abundance of joy and happiness into my life!!

I would have to say that the fall foliage has reached its peak today! The colors are absolutely heart-stopping, jaw-dropping, positively scrumptious!! (That reminds me. How many of you have seen the movie," Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" (?) The leading lady's character name was Truly Scrumptious! I always thought that was hilarious, but also sweet and so perfect for the film. When the opportunity arises for me to refer to something with those words, I usually must break into song!

Last night when I received the acceptance e-mail for my Thin Threads story, it couldn't have come at a better time. I had been feeling pretty "untalented" as a writer!! I had received a fairly negative critique from a writer/editor on some of my writing, then I read a contest-winning story and I thought it was SO much better than anything I've ever written, at anytime....so my acceptance news couldn't have come at a better time!!

As I was driving around this afternoon, enjoying the beauty of the trees and bushes; and not to mention having the difficult chore of keeping my eyes on the road, a thought came to me. Would I have noticed today's stunning display as much if I hadn't received the acceptance e-mail last night? I really can't say... Probably not. I certainly would have noticed the gorgeous colors, but maybe just a tad less.

Monday, October 19, 2009

** Acceptance By "Thin Threads" Anthology **

This evening I received an e-mail I'd been anticipating for a long time. My story, titled: "God's Grace Is Sufficient" has been accepted by Kiwi Publishing and will be included in one of the Thin Threads anthologies that will be published sometime next year.

I wrote the true story about a young woman who lived through Hurricane Katrina, moved to St. Louis, and eventually was a home recipient from Habitat for Humanity. I met with this lovely woman two or three times to interview and get all the information I needed to write her story. After quite a few edits and drafts, I finally completed and submitted it, with great hopes for its acceptance...naturally for myself, but even more so for Habitat for Humanity and the young woman it's about. She was happy and honored to share her story and hoped it would be published so it would reach many people.

I can't wait to call her tomorrow, and also the Habitat for Humanity office in St. Charles and tell them the wonderful news!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

* One Of Those Psychic Things *

Every once in awhile, things will happen to me that I refer to as my "Twilight Zone" moments, or ESP moments...You know, weird coincidences and other things that are just really strange, weird,  funny, etc. Well, just 5 minutes ago, I had what I would consider one of those moments.

On Monday, October 12th, I posted information about winning a contest called "Dirty Dozen", and since then have e-mailed and spoken to people quite a bit about it.

Just a few minutes ago, I needed to take a break from everything I was working on. I walked into our family room, picked up the remote and turned on the TV without knowing what was on, or even paying attention to what channel it was on. I just wanted to rest a little. I couldn't believe what movie was just beginning on AMC. There was Lee Marvin in his army uniform, and the title in large print, "The Dirty Dozen".

Insert those do-do-do sounds of Twilight Zone music ♪  ♫  ♪   

Monday, October 12, 2009

** Good Food -- Good Friend -- Good News **

*Good News: This afternoon I received an exciting e-mail. A "short" story I entered into an online writing contest, was chosen as one of the three winning entries. The three of them are online right now and they will also be included in the upcoming print edition.

The contest is ongoing monthly. It is called The Dirty Dozen and can be found at: http://vestalreview.net/dirtydozenOctober2009.html

The reason for the name Dirty Dozen is that the story can only have 12 words, plus a one word title!
 Read the rules and submit something! Scroll down and you'll find my entry at the bottom.

This contest was one of those "wow" writing moments for me. The words literally popped into my head....I typed, counted, and realized I only had eleven words, so I added the word "please".  I am not kidding!

*The Good Food -- Good Friend part of my day was meeting writer friend, Lynn, for lunch today. We had a great time talking, discussing writing topics, and sharing some of our own writing.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

** Bye Bye Rain....Hello Sunshine! **

I was so fortunate to look out my front door this past Friday evening and witness a beautiful sunset. The rain had finally ended and the sun was peaking through the clouds just in time to display an array of fantastic colors. (Yesterday, too, was a perfect fall day.....sunny, blue skies and cool temps.)

Speaking of fantastic colors.....many trees in my neighborhood are either beginning to change, or are in a full blown presentation of breathtaking, jaw dropping beauty.

While driving, I can barely keep my eyes on the road, searching for every bit of leafy splendor.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

** A Surprise Package **

I received a surprise package in today's mail. There were 2 Certificates of Appreciation from the St. Charles School District....one for speaking at Lincoln Elementary on September 21st, and the other for speaking at Monroe Elementary on September 23rd. But, the best part was 19 thank-you cards that some of the students at Lincoln Elementary made for me! The children took the time to draw and color pictures, plus write their own thank-you messages. Some were sweet, some were funny, and some were illegible, but they all touched my heart and I'll definitely save them in my "school speaking folder"!

My biggest wish is that at least one of them will remember me and be inspired to go for their dreams in life.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

** Tiny Lights: A Journal of Personal Narrative **

I have a small essay in Tiny Lights again this month. Please go to: http://tiny-lights.com/searchlights.php 
There is a monthly question posed to writers. Click on the one for 9/15: How do you keep track of your work? My title is: "Writer; Organize Thyself" ( I'm also in the 8/15: What helps you remember?) Just read the guidelines and send in your essay and voila'....you will be published!! There are other places to check out on their website, too. There is a yearly contest, literary services, links and a printed publication, which I recently subscribed to. Susan Bono, the editor-in-chief, is a really neat woman!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

** Genteel, Lovely, Intelligent, Inspiring **

The four words above is how I would describe Sue Monk Kidd and her daughter Ann Kidd Taylor last night. They came to town to speak about the memoir they co-wrote: Traveling with Pomegranates: A Mother-Daughter Story. They read several pasages from the book and answered a few questions. I think I can say that everyone in the audience was completely captivated, myself included! There were also books to purchase and an autograph session.

Sue's book; The Secret Life of Bees, was her first novel and a HUGE success. She had non-fiction books published previously, but this novel was quite an accomplishment and was written when she was approximately 50 years old.

I've been newly inspired, recharged, and filled with confidence! Look out world, here I come!